The past decade has been a golden era in brain research, one in which scientists have offered extraordinary hope for today’s mental health crisis by rewriting our basic understanding of how disorders of the human brain develop, and how we might help prevent or ameliorate them. And they all come down to one tiny, elusive cell, called microglia (remember that name!), which turn out to be game-changers for mental health.
The Angel and the Assassin offers a deep dive into recent groundbreaking discoveries about the brain and how microglia link our mental and physical health. When we are facing external stressors, including viral infections or chronic emotional stressors, these cells can wreak havoc in our brain, sparking inflammation and a wide range of problems. However, under the right circumstances, microglia can be coaxed into becoming healers, able to repair the brain in ways that help alleviate symptoms ranging from memory loss and anxiety to depression.
This book offers more hope and promise for human healing than any other science I’ve ever reported on. Today, as we face a pandemic and unprecedented political unrest, we need, more than ever, to understand what helps and what harms brain health, and have new pathways for healing.
I am excited to announce that The Angel and the Assassin will be available everywhere in paperback format January 19, 2021. If you haven’t already, grab your copy here!
Click here to read the prologue: When the Body Attacks the Brain.
To learn more about the brain and the long-overlooked cells called microglia, check out these excellent press releases and podcasts about The Angel and the Assassin:
If you haven’t yet, I hope you’ll consider pre-ordering from your local bookstore or seller of your choice!
You can also check out this review in Kirkus, or read the prologue here!
And, I have a piece about the book coming out in Wired magazine on January 21, as well as OpEds in The Boston Globe and STAT, so keep your eyes peeled!
I’m heading out on tour starting on the 21st, and would love to see your lovely faces! All the details are on my website, but here’s a quick look at where I’ll be over the next month. Let me know if you’re coming on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram! Invite your friends! Come and ask me questions!
JANUARY 21 – BALTIMORE The Ivy Bookstore – 7:00 pm In conversation with Sheilah Kast, host of On the Record, WYPR, Baltimore’s NPR News Station, with book signing and wine tasting to follow, courtesy of Peter Wood of The French Paradox (Voted Best Wine Store in Baltimore)!
JANUARY 30 – CAMBRIDGE, MA Harvard Science Center – 6:00 pm Harvard Division of Science, Harvard Cabot Science Library Series, Harvard Bookstore In conversation with Carey Goldberg, host of CommonHealth, WBUR, Boston’s NPR Station, and the brilliant Beth Stevens Ph.D., MacArthur Fellow and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator
FEBRUARY 12 – ANNAPOLIS, MD Eastport Library – 6:30 pm Community Foundation of Anne Arundel County and Old Fox Books In conversation with the brilliant Christina Bethell, Ph.D., professor of public health at Bloomberg School of Health at Johns Hopkins
FEBURARY 15 – HARRISBURG, PA Midtown Scholar – 5:00 pm In conversation with Brett Sholtis, reporter for Transforming Health, WITF, Harrisburg’s NPR News Station
Those are the dates! I so hope to see you there!
Thank you all for your help and support- please feel free to post and share this widely!
My new book, THE ANGEL AND THE ASSASSIN: THE TINY BRAIN CELL THAT CHANGED THE COURSE OF MEDICINE will be out in just 2 months, on January 21st, 2020! After two years of reporting, researching, writing, factchecking, I can’t wait to share it with you!
If you haven’t heard me yammering about it on social media (Instagram and Twitter and Facebook, please follow me?) here’s some of the news that I’ve been sharing!
I’m grateful for early praise pouring in from leading authors, scientists, physicians, and experts in their fields, people I think of, really, as Heroes of Humanity!
Susannah Cahalan, New York Times bestselling author of Brain on Fire calls The Angel and the Assassin“A fascinating deep dive into the unsung heroes (and villains) inside our skulls….Donna Jackson Nakazawa has a journalist’s eye for story, a scholar’s understanding of the research, and patient’s appreciation for high the stakes truly are.”
Dan Siegel, MD, Psychiatrist and Clinical Professor, UCLASchool of Medicine, and author of Mindsight says, “An inspiring account…will provide a game-changing view of health for generations of researchers, clinicians and citizens for years to come. Bravo!”
Shannon Brownlee, Senior Vice President of the Lown Institute, author of Overtreated writes, “Few non-fiction writers can tell the tale of scientific inquiry so vividly the reader can feel the excitement of discovery with every word. Donna Jackson Nakazawa is one of those writers, and this book tells the tale of one of the most intriguing and groundbreaking discoveries in all of medicine.”
Thomas Insel, MD, Former Director, National Institute of Mental Health 2002 – 2015, writes that The Angel and the Assassin is “A deft, scientific story about the ‘Cinderella’ cell of the brain, microglia . . . Jackson Nakazawa explains the possible translation of the science into solutions for brain disorders, health and disease.”
Christina Bethell, PhD, Professor of Child Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health says, “A captivating, page-turning story of the scientific discoveries that overturn centuries of medical domga. The Angel and the Assassin offers extraordinary promise and heralds new hope … paradigm shifting reading for us all.”
Mark Hyman, MD, Director, The Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine, New York Times bestselling author of Food, says, “[This] is the rarest of books, a combination of page-turning discovery and remarkably readable scientific journalism. A book to both savor and share.”
Susannah Tye, PhD, Director, Translational Neuroscience Laboratory, Mayo Clinic calls The Angel and the Assassin“An impressive, inspiring, timely call to arms.”
Terry Wahls, MD, author The Wahls Protocol, says, “The Angel and the Assassinis riveting, engaging. Nakazawa’s work is visionary.”
Peggy Orenstein, New York Times bestselling author of Girls & Sex, writes, “The Angel and the Assassin is one of those astonishing medical yarns that you almost can’t believe: how the power of this tiny cell was so long overlooked, how integral it has become to our understanding of neuroscience and immunology, the way it has transformed the most basic ideas of who we are as humans. It is especially essential reading for women, who face depression, Alzheimer’s and autoimmune disorders at higher rates than men.”
Andrew Weil, MD, New York Times bestselling author of Healthy Aging says, “Donna Jackson Nakazawa puts forth a revolutionary new way of thinking about the brain’s immune system and its interactions with [the] rest of the body….Much of the information here was new to me, and has made me more optimistic about the future of medicine.”
If you ARE maybe thinking of buying a copy of THE ANGEL AND THE ASSASSIN one day, would you consider pre-ordering? One of the most helpful things you can do to support an author’s work is to preorder the book from your independent, community bookseller. Here’s why! (Get ready for an INSIDE PEEK at publishing!) When you preorder from your local bookstore, the bookstore owner takes note: OH! HEY! PEOPLE ARE INTERESTED IN THIS BOOK! That makes them more likely to order copies, stock the book, place it in the bookstore window, write about it in their newsletter, and suggest it to other readers! (Oh, and to invite said author to do a book signing near you :). ALL THIS LEADS TO ANOTHER UNBELIEVABLY HELPFUL THING!! INDEPENDENT BOOKSTORES report pre-sales and sales to The New York Times Bestseller list (and other lists!). Lists RELY on small, privately owned bookshops sales reports for rankings! HOW CAN YOU DO THIS? IT TAKES ONE MINUTE AND FOUR CLICKS. This link takes you to the page for THE ANGEL AND THE ASSASSIN where you’ll find options for pre-ordering. Click on INDIEBOUND. Type in your zipcode (on the right where it says “Buy at a local store.”) ORDER! (Maybe that is only three clicks? Even better.) If you want to buy on Amazon or Barnes & Noble that’s okay too! You’ll see those options at the same link. BOTTOM LINE: PRE-ordering an upcoming book from your LOCAL FRIENDLY BOOKSELLER IS THE ULTIMATE GIFT YOU CAN GIVE AN AUTHOR IF YOU VALUE READING THEIR BOOKS.
As we get closer to pub date I’ll be sharing my speaking schedule, where I’ll be signing books, and other big news! Stay tuned and THANK YOU for all of your help and support! I’m lucky to have the best readers on the planet! (Oh, and please share this widely!)